These Spanish Gin Tonics are the perfect refreshing sipper for a hot summer day! Ice cold, filled with aromatics, gin and high quality tonic, they are sure to cool you down!
It was a hot summer day in Portland two years ago when I first had a Spanish Gin Tonic. And yes, you read that right, it is a Spanish Gin Tonic, not a gin AND tonic. They are nearly the same drink, but the Spanish dropped the “and” and added a whole lot of aromatics. Surprisingly, despite a summer spent in Spain, I never had one of these while in the country. I was more of a four euro box of wine kind of girl Hey, I was 23, give me a break. My palate had probably not developed to the point of enjoying gin and tonics yet. Or is it gins and tonic? Anyway….
My ignorance about the beauty of gin and tonics may have been one of those “youth is wasted on the young” kind of things, but it may also have been because I had never had a gin and tonic made with good tonic. We all know the standard tonic available in most grocery stores. Or worse, the bartender’s soda gun. But there are quite a few high quality tonics out there that are now pretty widely available. I am partial to Fever Tree or Fentimans. Q Tonic is also a good option. These days you can find them at well stocked grocery stores or even stores like World Market
Since my mispent youth, I have grown to appreciate a good gin and tonic on a hot, summer day. Usually I just go with the standard – gin, good tonic and a squeeze of lime. But ever since I had that Spanish Gin Tonic a few years ago, I have been thinking about it. There are a few factors that make Spanish Gin Tonics different than a regular gin and tonic. First of all, it is usually served in a ballon glass. The reason for the ballon glass is the second thing that makes Spanish Gin Tonics different – the aromatics. That balloon glass helps bring those aromas towards your nose, so you smell them with every sip. For the aromatics, you can really use whatever is available, think things like citrus peels, cucumbers, edible flowers, fresh herbs, juniper berries, peppercorns, even fruit. The idea is to enhance the aromatic nature of the gin.
To make this beautiful drink, fill a ballon glass with plenty of ice, add whatever aromatics you have on hand, pour in the gin and follow with the tonic water. Spanish Gin Tonics also tend to use more ice as well as more tonic water than a standard G&T. Which is another reason to use high quality tonic. I went with two ounces of gin and 5-6 ounces of tonic. The nice thing about using so much tonic and ice is that this is a drink you can sip on for awhile. Sounds like an ideal way to spend a sunny afternoon, right?
Try a Spanish Gin Tonic for a summer cocktail that will cool you down!
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Spanish Gin Tonics
- 2 ounces gin I used Bombay Sapphire
- 5 ounces high quality tonic water I used Fever Tree
- slice of lime
Aromatics (Choose Whatever You Have On Hand, It Doesn't Need To Be All Of These):
- citrus peel or slices
- cucumber Slices
- fresh herbs such as rosemary mint or basil
- dried juniper berries
- dried peppercorns
- edible flowers these are more for looks than flavor
- Fill a balloon glass with ice. Add whatever aromatics you are using. Pour in gin, top with tonic water and stir gently.
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When home grown cucumbers become available, I’m going to make this with cucumber, juniper berries and lime. I live in the deep south and this sounds perfect for a hot afternoon or evening.
That sounds lovely! Yes, these are so refreshing on a hot day.
Boyd Kobe says
Gorgeous looking cocktail! It sounds so delicious too. Can’t wait to try these, everyone will love them.
James Watson says
Great recipe, its all about the Citrus in Spanish gin and tonics. makes an awesome drink on a hot day.
Lynn | The Road to Honey says
Well I must admit that I don’t really drink gin and tonics or gin tonics as I am more a fruity cocktail (margarita on the rocks, lychee martini etc.) kind of girl. But this cocktail is so stunning and looks so refreshing that you have me convinced that I need to be a little more experimental with my Saturday evening cocktail hours.
Thank you Lynn! If you love margaritas you actually might love this too – different, but still bright and a little citrusy!
Jessica @ Citrus Blossom Bliss says
I totally wish I drank carbonated beverages – this looks like one worth making an exception for. Absolutely stunning photos, by the way!
Thank you Jessica! I guess the carbonation is kind of key to this one 🙂
Oh my….your photos are stunning! I can almost hear the effervescence of the tonic! My family will love this drink! Thank you!
Thank you so much Annie! I hope you love it!
Michelle @ Giraffes Can Bake says
These are so beautiful Meghan, and all the aromatics make it so perfect!
I’ve only recently become a fan of gin, I think it was more I convinced myself that I didn’t like it so never had it – I’m still more of a vodka tonic girl, but do love a good G&T from time to time. And you’re right, good tonic is key. Sometimes I have to settle for the cheaper stuff and you really can tell the difference.
Definitely have to try these asap!
Thanks so much Michelle! I think gin is an aquired taste, but once you aquire it there is no going back! 🙂
Tina Marie says
These look so refreshing! I can’t wait to make them for my husband, he loves Gin and this is one he hasn’t tried yet!
Thank you Tina! I hope you both love it!
Gin is my drink! Ive never gotten into diluting it with tonic, but your photos are so stunning Im going to make this at once! I think its a sign that I have all the ingredients don’t you?
Yes! So glad to find another gin lover, isn’t it the best? And if you have all the ingredients then you MUST make it asap!
I’m diggin’ all those aromatics! I don’t think anybody judges you for 4-euro boxes of wine. We’ve all been there. Your time is Spain sounds like a blast.
Haha, thanks lady!
Oh this looks so good. I love a good gin and tonic, to the point of having preferred gins based upon the tonic available. (I think Bombay Sapphire works best with cheap tonic, but Saint George Gin is my favorite if we’re lucky enough to have Fever Tree available.) I’ve not tried a Spanish Gin Tonic yet, or heard of them. I can’t wait for cocktail time tonight.
I’ve never thought to pick the gin based on the tonic! I’ve never tried Saint George, I will have to see if I can find that. I love Hendricks too, I switch between that and Bombay usually. Thanks Allyson, I hope you love it!
Ashleigh @Dash of Evans says
I just got a nice bottle of gin on our trip to Detroit from Valentine’s Distillery and I’m saving it for the perfect drink. This is IT! I can totally picture myself sipping this outside.
Oh awesome! Using a local small batch gin would be great here! Thanks Ashleigh
Natasha @ Salt and Lavender says
I’m not at the point where I can appreciate a good gin (and) tonic yet, I’m afraid. I can appreciate these beautiful photos, though!!!
Thank you Natasha! And TRY it, I bet this will change your mind! 😉
This even LOOKS like a very cool & refreshing drink on a warm/hot summer day~~love all the combos you’ve suggested. The photos are definetly enticing~~looks like a 5-star concoction!???❤️
Thank you! Yes, it is so refreshing!
The photos are beautiful! And since you’re a NW girl, consider picking up some Portland Style Cricket Club gin, Gomper’s gin or Aviation gin. All local and all really different from each other – but super yummy. I have Fever Tree in the fridge and will be trying this little gem out!
Oh great tip, Jennifer! I love trying new kinds of gin, especially locally made! I have tried Aviation but not the other two. We did try a Seattle gin called Ebb and Flow that was amazing. I hope you enjoy your Spanish Gin Tonic!
Dawn at Girl Heart Food says
Hey girl! I commented earlier, but perhaps I didn’t hit ‘send.’
As soon as I saw your first photo, I clicked ‘Pin.’ Your photos are absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!!!
I think my tastes have definitely matured over the years. I remember waaaay back when I first tried wine coolers and thought they were the bomb and now I can’t even look at them, lol.
I love everything about this drink, especially all those aromatics. It just looks and sounds like a big glass of awesomeness! Cheers to a fantastic cocktail, a fabulous weekend and a big ‘YAY’ for Friday. Have a great one, friend 🙂
Hmm, something wonky with my spam filter! Thanks for coming back! <3
jane @ littlesugarsnaps says
I have to say that your photos are stunning – they really bring out the beautiful colours in the aromatics you’ve added. Also, the drink sounds great. Gin and Tonic is fine, but you’re sounds heaps more exciting.
Thank you so much Jane!
Dawn @ Girl Heart Food says
First of all, I pinned before I even read down ’cause I know I’m gonna love this cocktail. Secondly, your pictures are BEAUTIFUL!! Great job, girl!
I remember years (and I mean years) ago when I first started trying drinks and loving wine coolers. Remember those? Those were the bomb. And now I guess my tastes have matured and I totally do not like ’em, but give me a fancy pants cocktail? Yes please!
Love all the aromatics in here, Meghan! Can’t wait to try! Have a great weekend!
Thank you so much for pinning Dawn! It is funny how our tastes mature, right? I’m glad they have matured enough to love G&T’s, because they are the best!
Marianne | Basil & Bubbly says
I’ve never heard of Spanish Gin Tonic but I love the idea of a more fragrant classic. I almost wish I’d never had the “good” tonic, because the regular stuff is a total letdown now. I love Fever Tree and Jakc Rudy’s tonics. I actually have a recipe hanging around my house somewhere for homemade tonic! If only I had a way to disseminate it to the public lol.
It is true, I have become a tonic snob! I have been toying with the idea of making homeade tonic also, but have never gotten around to it. Thanks Marianne!